Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Why I like Musical Theatre Part 2- Here's where it gets a bit more interesting and a little less depressing

So where were we? Oh yes I was about to go to a lecture on Solvents and had just finished spilling my emotional guts out. Well, not exactly, for some reason my mind has made a mental block of my time at Middle School- good thing really as it was rather shit.
And here we arrive at Upper School, chance for a new beginning (apart from all the other people from middle school arriving with me). It's pretty dull until we get to year 11 so we'll skip a bit (its more of the same- taunting, general bullying by twats with dodgy speech abilities and so on). Yes, year 11, GCSEs. I didn't revise amazingly hard for these (didn't need to really GCSES are piss easy. Apart from music which is not piss easy but does have the added bonus of listening to the Indiana Jones theme for revision. Track 5.) but I was still tediously bored by revision and so did what I do best- procrastinate. Around this time my dad got a super duper new work computer and I discovered Accubroadway. Aaah, Accubroadway my best friend in the world.
Accubroadway is a great online radio station that just plays showtune after showtune, you can pause it, skip things you don't like and explore its many subchannels. For some reason I started off on the revivals channel mainly because I'd heard of some of the shows. But as I got more and more into it I switched over to the now playing channel and discovered a myriad of musical theatre. I think the first modern Broadway show I found was Avenue Q and of course I fell in love. After that came Rent, Wicked and so on; I remember the day the Rent CD arrived, I stuck it on my dad's ageing CD deck system and made cookies whilst I danced around the kitchen.
For the next year or so I discovered more and more shows and bought more and more sheet music (much to the annoyance of my mother). I also spent more and more time in the music practice rooms with my two friends (yes two, count them, I had two friends) belting my brains out to Chicago (we did a mean version of Class) and the like. Strangely the bullying started to disappear and I began to make more friends. Was this the theatre? Or some strange coincidence? I hadn't really though about it until now but it does seem a bit weird that my love of musical theatre and ability to make friends came at the same time. I had finally realised where I belonged in the world even if I hadn't found it. Sixth form was a much more genial affair, I stopped doing music as a subject but carried on the keyboard lessons gaining a grade 8 and starting to slip a few theatre songs in to my lessons (damn you Jason Robert Brown for making your songs so hard to play!). My theatrical taste became more acute, learning the basics such as:

  • Almost all Andrew Lloyd Webber is shit, Jesus Christ Superstar being the a few other songs here and there
  • Sondheim is God even if you don't quite get what he is doing all the time

I even discovered some new artists that barely anyone had heard of (Andrew Lippa, JRB, Tim Acito). Not everybody appreciated my new found love of musical theatre but I didn't particularly care because I could still have those fun times in the practice room belting my brains out and now I could accompany myself too!

Hmm, this is turning out as therapeutic or interesting to read as I'd hoped. I give up for today. I'll write the third and final part sometime when I'm not so brain-addled by revision. I might even re-edit the first two parts if you're lucky!

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